Hi everyone! I hope you are all enjoying the colder weather. It's such a relief!
We survived the anniversary of my dad's death a few weeks ago. It was something I was actively dreading. The month before I dyed my hair red and tried several different ways to distract myself. The day of was so surreal... like living through a dream. I want to thank my sister-in-law a thousand times for her care and support. We hung out most of the day, got our nails done, and she allowed me to have stupid surface level conversation mixed with moments of silence. She brought me a flower and made sure I knew we were going through it together... and really that's what you need. I love you Laura. Thank you.
The best thing about the anniversary of my dad's death is that we survived it. We will never have to live that year again, and I'm so happy to see it safely in the rear view. I know there are still hard times to come, but I do feel power in knowing that we survived. I emerged in tact with my family and full of gratitude for my people. Thank you. Thank you. Thank you.
I also wanted to mention another huge thing in my life, which is that I've joined Anne Irwin's gallery here in Atlanta. I was driving around yesterday and it really struck me how freaking lucky I am to be there. I've been painting seriously since I was 16 years old. I studied in Venice. I was a portrait artist. I did fine art photography. I tried and tried and tried and didn't get any traction. I actually submitted some work to Anne about 10 years ago for her emerging artist show, and it wasn't accepted. Eventually I reached a point where I knew I could paint but I didn't know what to sit down and fight myself to produce a mediocre piece. I was looking to the outside world for influence... saying things on Facebook like "what should I paint today?" I was trying to paint things I thought people would buy... and at that point I knew it was time to take a break. I packed up and stored my paint and brushes. I decided to wait until the day I felt inspired internally, and I honestly wasn't sure that day would come. About 20 months ago I was put on bed rest when I was pregnant with my Quinnster, and for some reason that sparked some creative energy inside of me. I did my bed rest in a chair and painted. I'll admit some of my first paintings weren't great, but even at that time I had a list of about 20-30 paintings in my head that I wanted to create. Each idea led to the next, and before I knew it I was falling down the rabbit hole.
I've been blown away by everybody's encouragement. In the beginning I thought I would keep painting as long as people were buying the pieces... and you guys did! Thank you SO much. Every person who said something nice or showed interest in my pieces kept me going. I can't begin to tell you how much I appreciate it. When Anne Irwin and I talked about me joining her gallery, that was surreal. Who gets so lucky that after 10 years they finally get what they've always wanted? I can't even believe it. I've loved working with Anne and Emily, and thank you all for the support from the bottom of my heart. You guys cheering me on got me through the hardest thing I hope I'll ever have to go through. When I paint, I think about my dad. Our relationship goes on even though he's not physically here. It's the coolest thing. I still feel very close to him and hope I'm honoring him well.
And while we're on the subject of art and design, I've been working SO hard on my Instagram. Maybe you're not supposed to admit that you work hard on it, but I do. I signed up for a course and "curated my feed" (I can't believe I just typed that.) One of the things I've done in that process is really honed my aesthetic to make sure that what I post is in line with the overall feed. If you follow me (PLEASE), you know that means dark walls and neutral colors.
It was during this time that I was trying to figure out what I loved that a friend introduced me to interior designer June Chamberlain's work (website). June has been in the business for over 20 years and does both residential and commercial spaces. She has worked on projects across the south. She earned an interior design degree from UGA and has been featured in national publications, including my favorite: Atlanta Homes & Lifestyles. I love how her work elevates antiques and creates a timeless, almost masculine feel. There's very limited color. Below are a few of my favorite photos in her portfolio. Also... her use of Todd Murphy's work is incredible. You guys know that gets me every time.
Thank you all for stopping by!